Shostakovich: His Life and Music

Shostakovich: His Life and Music
Haus Publishing
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Peter Pan in Kensington Gardens, Peter and Wendy


Dimitri Shostakovich was the most popular Soviet composer of his generation. Internationally esteemed, his reputation has increased since his death in 1975. He is now widely considered to be the last greatest classical symphonist. He wrote his First Symphony aged only nieteen and soon embarked on a dual career as a concert pianist and composer. His early avante-gardism was to result in the triumph of his 1934 opera Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk. First praised as being the product of "the best tradtions of Soviet culture", the opera was later denounced by Satalin as both "muddle" and "chaos". Shostakovich fell from grace and for most of his life would suffer from a complex and at times brutalising relationship with both Stalin, through the years of the Great Terror, and the Soviet goverments that followed. He was to endure two official denunciations, in 1936 and again in 1948, both seriously affecting his status and wellbeing. In spite of this persecution his Seventh...

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